Hornsby dad conquers the Sahara

Hornsby dad conquers the Sahara

BY BRIAN KARLOVSKY

Nick Thomson during training before the Morocco ultra marathon. JOE MURPHYNick Thomson during training before the Morocco ultra marathon. JOE MURPHY

EVEN while shuffling over rocks in the middle of the Sahara with only his torchlight to guide his way, Hornsby father-of-three Nick Thomson never considered giving up.

He was mid-way through the Marathon De Sables – a 243km, six-day ordeal across the southern Sahara desert in Morocco, where competitors contend with searing temperatures of up to 50C and camp under the stars.

Mr Thomson, 37, said the hardest part was the 82km double marathon on day four. “As the sun went down I was extremely tired, my legs felt like they were going to explode and I just wanted to curl up in a ball and sleep,” he said. “It was dark and you had your torch and you kept hitting rocks with your feet in so much pain.

“But then I caught up with a buddy which kept me going strong.’‘

Mr Thomson, who has raised nearly $5000 for charity through the race, said it was not for the faint-hearted.

“With temperatures reaching 52 degrees … during the day and dropping to five at night, from sand storms to a hail storm, the desert gave us everything we expected and more.

The biggest dunes were on the last day, the Merzouga Dunes, Morocco’s largest dunes reaching 300m.’‘

But as his fellow extreme-runners plan their next challenge Mr Thomson said he was quite content with his achievement.

“A lot of guys are planning the next run – I’m not,’’ he said.

“Would I recommend this race to people? If you want a challenge like no other then yes, but you need to put in the hard yards and the key to completing is planning, dedication and commitment,’’ he said

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Posted on May 19, 2012, in Morocco News, Visit Morocco and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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